True story: Playing a game of baseball with a mixed group a year or two ago, I was first up to bat for my team. I was offered a tennis racket and turned it down, much to the delight of the doubting Thomas's (yes, male players). I smacked that home run - highest scoring player of the game. Get in.
This is the story of my (not especially athletic but) tomboy life so far.
As much as I appreciate girls come in all shapes and sizes, attitudes and styles, I wouldn't discourage my future potential daughters from being a tomboy. I've learned so much about myself being a tomboy - something you can empathise with?
This one goes out to all former child/teen tomboys around the world.
19 Things I Learned From Being A Tomboy
It's not always a great move to chop off all your hair. Or even part of it - when I was at Uni I used to cut my own hair over a sink (partly to save money, but also because it was short and curly so no one noticed any errors!). This was something I regret come Graduation Day photos! Also, be prepare to be judged as a lesbian. Ridiculous as it is, it happens.
Tomboys are not necessarily competitive sports freaks. They come in many forms, so just be who you are. You're unique, and you can still be a reader tomboy! I can't throw a frisbee for love nor money, but hey, no one's great at everything. Apart from possibly Neil Patrick Harris.
Remember, gyms are not just for weight lifting obsessed muscle freaks, retired folks loosening off and gym bunnies who aren't really sweating. Likewise, it's not just men who body pump or boot camp - you'd think this is obvious, but it's not to many. It's absolutely fine to be what you deem as 'normal' and just go for a little workout at your own speed, without a layer of mascara. And what more perfect place to parade your favourite baggy tee?
Not being afraid of a bit of mud has led me to many opportunities I would never have had otherwise: my Raleigh International expedition is a great example. I learned so much about myself on this eight week project, changed the direction of my life, made many friends, including my now husband!
All I wanna do is play outside! Movies are great for nights in, but it's healthier and more fun to be out in the fresh air. Winter or summer, you'll find me out and about tramping around.
I know my physical limits - from drinking competitions to knowing how fast I can ride my bike round a corner with no hands, I know my body and what it can take.
Trouser suits look just as smart as a skirt/dress suit. I never wanted to wear a dress my mum tried to put me in as a kid. My tip - don't force the kid to wear a dress if she doesn't want to. Harmony in the household is worth more than a swishy outfit. And heels make your lush legs look longer.
Confidence can come from being both tomboy and girly, but nowhere is confidence in a woman more required and cultivated in a male orientated industry, like the waste sector. I work in waste and recycling, and I've had to deal with some 'old school' girl-scoffers who didn't like the fact I was educated, young enough to be their daughter, and a woman. Being able to tough it out and prove my ability to get my hands dirty has helped me here. I'm not saying you can't be a confident girly girl, but showing I was not scared to get in a graft and not sit pretty at a desk all day did me favours.
'Sexy' Halloween outfits are not me. I dressed as Bob the Builder for my 18th birthday party and rocked those overalls! (Wish I had a photo to share - I'll have a root about...)
It's fine to hate pink, but you know, there is a tone which would look good on you (mine's a dark fushia kinda shade). Try it, it won't hurt. My favourite work outfit is now bright pink tights, black shirt, black shorts and black heels.
"Cool" and "dude" are not just words for boys to use. A female mate at work and I exchange these words as a greeting now - it's turned into a joke, but you get the idea.
When you DO doll-up (if you do) and wear a dress and heels, you'll be amazed at the positive reaction. I always felt like a fraud wearing a dress and like make up just wasn't me. As I've grown up a bit, I do wear more dresses (knitwear, mainly), but I definitely feel more comfy in a pair of jeans. Don't feel people are encouraging you to change - just graciously accept the compliments and pull the jeans back on when you get home.
On the subject of baggy tees, everyone, no matter who you ask, will have a 'scruffs' outfit for lounging around at home. It's just some people's are joggers and a Kaiser Chiefs shirt, and others are a Prada onesie. Yes, they make them too.
"No makeup days" don't have to be an 'exposing' social media campaign or a day when you're couch bound. Lots of women look fabulous without makeup. Check out Dame Helen Mirren going on a dinner date with her husband recently without 'a face' (from Daily Mail). It's just some people's are joggers and a Kaiser Chiefs shirt, and others are a Prada onesie. Yes, they make them too.
It's totally ok if most of your friends are guys. Some girls will hate you for it, but that's life. You won't be liked by everyone, whoever you are. Girl mates are essential though - make sure you have a couple you can count on for sharing good and bad times.
Your favourite shoes are simple flipflops or walking boots - that's not a crime. They're often cheaper than heels and last a helluva lot longer!
It's ok not to adore the latest heartthrob. I was a teen in 'the Titanic years' and never understood the obsession with the young Leo DiCaprio. Now he's older, and a bit rougher, yet, but not floppy haired Jack the lucky poker player.
I'm the biggest nerd - I love comic books and stuff like that! I don't
have any friends who are actresses. I only had one girlfriend when I was
growing up. Most of my friends were boys. I was such a tomboy.
I enjoyed doing "guy" things.
~ Megan Fox
Sure, get girly: I know I love to have coloured toenails, but it's also ok to be a tomboy, be keen to get your wellies on, prefer action flicks and worship your bike. I've learned a lot about myself doing it and would never stop a child of mine becoming one.
Do what you want (as long as you're not hurting anyone). It's all about choice and who you want to be - a form of feminism. Strong women can be girly or tomboyish, but it's important to be who you want to be. "Don't take no crap off of nobody!" - thanks Cool Runnings!
There's no wrong way to be a girl.
Check out #likeagirl on Twitter for inspirational fights against the fact you're a girl holds you back. Feminine slights and anti tom boy attitudes are coming to an end.
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Born to be a Tourist - my travel blog, currently featuring lots of tomboy biking!